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Wow am I excited about this month’s Moonshine Ink! Not only did I get to write a story about my friend Carl who’s building a wooden stand-up paddleboard in my DiStill Life art column, Fern got to speak her mind in the Do Tell section (this month’s question asked what celebrity you would punch). She’s one tough pup!

September marked my last month as an associate editor for Moonshine, so hopefully this will free up some more time for freelancing and, of course, this here blog. I sure will miss working with all the great columnists of the Wellness & Learning section I oversaw, but am looking forward to new adventures!

If you haven’t checked out the new Moonshine Ink that’s on stands around Tahoe/Truckee, do it! My latest DiStill Life column is on the new grant-funded Arts For the Schools programming, and it is quite exciting stuff. Project Bandaloop is the first performer on the playbill, and I can’t wait for the show next weekend… they’re dancing in the air, off the side of the Resort at Squaw Creek building. yowza!

I’ve been neglecting _____smith blogging as of late since change is in the air. I’ve been super busy working on some freelance projects, plus juggling my associate editing work with Moonshine Ink and taking on a quasi full-time job with Tahoe Mountain Sports in Kings Beach.

I’m handling all their web copywriting (penning compelling product descriptions, like Elaine from Seinfeld did for J. Petterman) and social media, which means I’m now blogging, and on Twitter and Facebook, as the voice of Tahoe Mountain Sports. I’ll still keep _____smith updated with my crafting and latest published work, but don’t hold your breath for super-fresh content. If you miss me too much, follow me through Tahoe Mountain Sports!

The new Tahoe Quarterly is out! Here’s what to look for inside, penned by me:

-An artist profile on Tahoe City plein air painter Michele de Braganςa, p. 38. Winner of the 2008 Seasons of Martis (now North Tahoe Plein Air), de Braganςa was selected again for the 2010 event on September 8–12. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with this year!

-The TQ Market shopping guide on what to put in your pack this summer, p. 34 (wine made by Clif, plus a collapsible container to pack and preserve it sans glass, the lightest dog treats on the market, and more).

-The issue’s feature on Tahoe Family Traditions, p. 61. What a fun one to research… I chatted with kids, grandfathers, dads, moms and more to dig up these treasured annual rites around the lake.

A new commission came my way last week, and *poof* I’m all jazzed up on block printing again. Here’s a shot of a piece I did a bit back for Chris and Mayumi at Moonshine Ink. Their logo was just crying to be inked! Stay tuned for the revealed commission (3 wedding gifts) as well as a new Tahoe stamp I’ve been working on…

I am in love with the work of Natalia Williams, the featured artist in my current DiStill Life column in April’s Moonshine Ink. Using dried flowers, sand and other elements of nature alongside traditional collaging material (newspaper, magazines), Natalia creates such textural works of art. Check out my story on stands now, page 53. Here’s some more of her work since it couldn’t all make the print version:

Also don’t miss my picks in this edition:

-Beth Ingalls’ column defending our right to line-dry

Not Your Average Dog Walk by Eric Wallis… a look into the sport of skijoring

-The feature on Kings Beach homebrewer Kevin Drake

-Seth Lightcap’s recap of the G.N.A.R. game—I was wondering what happened there

-And Tim Hauserman’s Growing Up in Tahoe column

Oh happy day… rarely do I work a project as long as I do with Tahoe Quarterly‘s annual Mountain Home issue. It started last May, when we TQ editors were rounding up applications for the magazine’s annual awards. We then toured finalists through the end of summer and wrote, edited and fact checked content to finally bring you what’s hitting newsstands right now.

I am particularly amped for this edition since it marks the first time our Outstanding award has gone to a full-time residence, a 2,000 square foot one at that (see photo below). I wrote the feature story, so be sure to check it out.

Also written by me in the issue are: an arts profile on Truckee’s Mountain Forge; a home design story on the most whimsical home in Tahoe, the Hardy residence in Incline Village; the TQ Market section on ways to lighten up your decor; and Home Award profiles on a Martis Peak barn, a stunning Olympic Heights remodel and an Incline Village cottage.

This month’s Moonshine Ink is a visual feast… starting with its cover, my favorite yet. Besides reading my DiStill Life column on the amazing Susie Alexander, who bested a van Gogh legacy in February (see page 60), here are my picks for the month (click the links to read if you’re not in town to pick up a copy):

-Practical Wellness columnist Linda Lindsay’s exposé on radon: its startling Tahoe statistics, and how to test and protect your home, page 20

-the fun design and great reader-submitted images in the Winter Photo Annual, page 27

-the tater tot photo on page 44

-Robert “Fro” Frohlich’s Glacier Point adventure, page 46. He’s one of my favorite local writers — always good for a laugh!

-Olivia Dwyer’s profile on local Etsy artisans, page 58, well written and so nice to see folks doing what they love for a living

-and of course, Seth Lightcap’s tribute to C.R. Johnson, page 49, who died at Squaw Valley on February 24

It’s Moonshine time! I love it when my column gets inked every month… just seeing on the page is exciting, but especially when it’s chosen to be in color. My interview with photographer Ryan Salm got two full-color pages (pg 54–55), so be sure to check it out. You can see even more of his work on his new gallery website.

A few other highlights, in my opinion, are (links and page #s provided):

-the photo of “Taxi James” in Do Tell, pg 2 (he he!)

-Beth Ingalls’ call for patience, pg 9

-Olivia Dwyer’s Vancouver Olympic round-up… what locals to watch, and when to watch them, pg 31

-Flip Speckleman’s diary column… be sure to read his Feb. 1 entry, pg 39

-Jackie Varriano’s Knitting Factory (pg 53) and Courtesy Call (pg 56) profiles. Courtesy Call front-woman Elyssa Lee cuts my hair, and she rocks!

And don’t forget to submit to Moonshine’s winter photo annual (deadline is March 3) and/or the Moonshine Ink 500 writing contest (due April 19). Details on pg 6 of the current issue.